Call me an optimist, but I think the Sox can be competitive sooner rather than later. I think that they are going the right way in terms of adding overall talent. They have some pieces worth building around on both sides. There is still work that needs to be done, I've expressed my concerns about properly developing decent hitters numerous times. Injuries can always ruin careers and some guys just don't make it. If they cleaned up their defense and baserunning, they could have won at least 15 more games than they did.
Then there's our competition (for the division at least):
The Tigers are much better than us right now, but how much longer does this current group have? Miguel Cabrera will be on the wrong side of 30 next year, Prince Fielder and Max Scherzer will turn 30. Verlander is starting to be hittable. They have good young outfielders, and Jose Iglesias can hold down shortstop for a while, but are they going to figure out the bullpen?
The Indians might be the next team to dominate the division for several years. They have good young hitters, especially when Francisco Lindor gets there. Danny Salazar broke out last year, but can he keep it up? Will they figure out their bullpen? Can they keep Masterson? Will Bauer figure it out?
Kansas City made a good run last year, but their hitting numbers were not all that impressive, outside of Perez and Hosmer. Who gets the ball after Shields? What do they do after Shields leaves for a bigger offer?
Last year, Birmingham might have had a better rotation than the Twins. Mauer is going to be on the wrong side of 30. Buxton will be a pain to deal with, but outside of him, who else is there? They've really soured on Sano for his attitude. They might have a long way to go.
So to summarize, I think Hahn has a good game plan going forward. If the Sox can continue to add to their talent, develop some good players and get lucky with some breakout years, they can compete. We have our problems, but so does everybody else. Baseball is a very unpredictable sport, and the White Sox have a chance if they put themselves in the right position.